Wednesday, July 20, 2016

I Listen So You Don't Have To: Masked Man Show Ep. 2

Miz joins the Masked Man show this week
Photo Credit:
If you’re new, here’s the rundown. We listen to a handful of wrestling podcasts each week. Too many, probably, though certainly not all of them. In the interest of saving you time — in case you have the restraint to skip certain episodes — the plan is to give the bare bones of a given show and let you decide if it’s worth investing the time to hear the whole thing. There are many wrestling podcasts out there, of course, but this feature largely hews to the regular rotation we feel best fit the category of hit or miss. If we can save other folks some time, we’re happy to do so.

Show: Masked Man Show
Episode: 2 (July 18, 2016)
Run Time: 1:33:00
Guest: Joel Solomon, LaToya Ferguson (co-hosts); The Miz (1:16:43)

Summary: David Shoemaker is in studio past guest hosts Solomon, a Ringer colleague, and Ferguson, who writes about wrestling for the AV Club. They open by discussing Brock Lesnar’s positive drug test, reflect on John Cena’s turn as Emmy host and burgeoning Hollywood prospects, revisit the Cruiserweight Classic and get ready for Monday’s RAW and Tuesday’s draft by reviewing their top ten lists. At the end, Shoemaker does a phone interview with The Miz, who gives his thoughts on the draft, having Maryse on the road with him and the Ringer’s observation of Cleveland Week.

Quote of the week: Miz: “The years that she wasn’t with WWE, I missed her so much. You know, we’ve been together for a long time, married for almost three years now, but we’ve been together for almost 10 … she’s kinda like my rock, you know? She’s my best friend, and so when you know, you’re sitting there talking to each other on FaceTime or, over the phone, it’s not enough, you know? You want that physical connection, you want to hug, you want to kiss, you want to see them physically. And now that I can have her on the road with me, you know, be my side, you know, in my corner while I’m wrestling in the ring, it brings a whole new confidence to me. And it makes my whole life just easier and better, and I think that’s why you’ve seen a resurgence of my abilities and me just basically becoming the Intercontinental Champion and keeping the title for now, it’s now 105 days, which is unheard of nowadays, cause usually people lose ’em in a day. Just ask Zack Ryder.”

Why you should listen: Damn if this one didn’t get me legitimately hyped for the draft. Whether it’s the fact I listened to it just a few hours before Smackdown, or the fact they recorded before RAW and therefore didn’t get bogged down with anything useless, this was the best Shoemaker show in weeks. Lesnar was a worthy topic, but all three panelists were willing (and able) to go deep on the CWC, which was quite welcome. The three also seemed well suited to discuss Cena’s career evolution, and having Miz to speak on both the draft and the Cleveland connection was actually quite fitting.

Why you should skip it: Much like recent Cheap Heat episodes where the wrestler interview gets tacked on at the end, the Miz segment seemed something of an afterthought — certainly the guest was not long for time and I was left wanting more. And while the folks did a decent job reflecting on each of the draft prospects they discussed, it’s not unfair to say the conversation has been ground to a pulp over the last several weeks.

Final thoughts: Shoemaker probably needs a permanent cohost, and Solomon should get consideration for the job given he’s also on staff at The Ringer. It’s understandable there was really very little speculation about Sunday’s Battleground, perhaps that will be addressed in writing. The most important thing to note here is that listening to the show even after the draft takes place will not be a waste of time, especially since they cover several interesting bases first.